Ireland playmaker reveals Wallabies ‘interest’ ahead of starring Six Nations role

Colin Newboult
Ireland celebrating Ciaran Frawley's try against Wales in 2024 Six Nations.

Ireland celebrating Ciaran Frawley's try against Wales in 2024 Six Nations.

Utility back Ciaran Frawley has admitted that there was “interest” from down under over potentially representing Australia.

The Leinster playmaker qualifies for the Wallabies after being born in Sydney, but he moved to Ireland at the age of three.

Both of his parents are also Irish and it was always his first choice, but it could have been a different story had Andy Farrell not brought him into the fold.

First Six Nations appearance

Frawley made his Test debut in 2023 and then stood in for the injured Hugo Keenan against Wales in the third round of the Six Nations last week.

The 26-year-old impressed during that encounter, scoring a try in the 31-7 triumph, but revealed that Australia were potentially looking at bringing him over at one stage, even if Eddie Jones didn’t get in contact.

“I was in and out of camps from 2021 and I felt my time was coming. I had a few injuries along the way and obviously I was still qualified for Australia,” he told reporters.

“But I never had a phone call with Eddie Jones. I knew there was interest from over there, but I was never going to go.

“I’ve lived in Ireland since I was three years old, Ireland is my home, I don’t want to move to the other side of the world when I felt I had the potential to do what I actually wanted to do.”

Frawley has been a consistent performer for Leinster over the years but, prior to Johnny Sexton’s retirement, was never a first choice option in the big games.

He has since impressed in significant Champions Cup encounters and got his first Ireland start against Wales, but there was previously talk of him moving to Ulster to get more game time.

That, however, was news to the talented playmaker, who said: “I didn’t even know about that, the other provinces. You never look at it. I’d never take heed of it.

“It’s funny, my dad would say to me, ‘don’t listen to whatever is going on’, and I don’t. I actually don’t.

“It helps on the pitch because you just focus on what you need to do for your team-mates and coaches.”

Best position

Frawley started at full-back in Round Three of the Six Nations but can also play at both fly-half and centre.

He was at pivot for the Champions Cup triumphs over La Rochelle, Sale Sharks and Stade Francais, but some think 12 could well be his best position going forward, given his 6ft 3in, 14st 5lb frame.

“I just want to play. That’s the main thing. I want to play in big games,” he said. “The way I see it is I think like a 10, I feel like I play like a 10 but I probably have the ability to jump into other positions and do a job there.

“So for me it is understanding that and then knowing that it will get me into the big games. That’s what I take the satisfaction from.”

READ MORE: Springboks legend says Ireland can only be ‘judged’ when they visit South Africa due to sub-standard Six Nations